Healthcare transparency tools operated by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services are limited in terms of providing relevant and understandable cost and quality information for consumers, according to the Government Accountability Office.

These transparency tools—websites with health cost or quality information comparing different providers of healthcare services—are meant to improve the quality and affordability of healthcare. However, while CMS operates five transparency tools—Nursing Home Compare, Dialysis Facility Compare, Home Health Compare, Hospital Compare and Physician Compare—GAO found that the tools lack relevant information on cost and provide limited information on key differences in quality of care, which hinders the ability of consumers to make meaningful distinctions among providers based on their performance.  

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